ASL Lessons | Bookstore | Library | ASL University Main ►
GRAPES: The American Sign Language (ASL) sign for "grapes"
The dominant hand makes contact, then lifts off and moves an inch or two then makes contact again.
Sample sentence: My sister likes green grapes, I prefer red.
Notes: You may see GRAPES signed with three movements instead of two. In casual everyday signing, I see two movements being used more often than three. However, if you were to ask someone how to sign GRAPES they might show you the three movement version. Both versions are used and accepted.
It is just funny / strange how when you ask someone to something in isolation it often gets signed differently than if signed as part of a sentence in a real life conversation.
Suppose you were signing GRAPE JELLY - would you still use a double movement for GRAPE, or just a single one?
Grape jelly can be treated as a compound or it can be treated as a two sign term.
Also, the way you first sign "grape jelly" at the beginning of a conversation is likely to be more "clearly articulated" than how you would sign it after a few minutes of discussion on the topic of grape jelly. Which is to say you would likely use two movements for GRAPE the first time you mention grape jelly -- then later in the same discussion you would likely shorten it. Also I'd just spell jelly if chatting with an adult but I probably do a quick spread-on forward-back movement if chatting with a child -- yet I wouldn't hesitate to fingerspell jelly to a child either.
Children in Deaf households get exposed to spelling as if it were just another sign that happens to have those particular handshapes in that particular series.
Of course, when discussing topics such as "grape jelly" you are going to get a wider range of approaches to how people will sign it. So stay flexible and avoid right / wrong thinking.
You teachers out there please avoid the knee jerk impulse to immediately label the initialized "J" version of JELLY as "signed English." Initialization-phobia gets old after a while when a kid is just trying to ask for a sandwich.
Notes: See: RED
* Want to help support ASL University? It's easy: DONATE (Thanks!)
* Another way to help is to buy something from Dr. Bill's "Bookstore."
* Want even more ASL resources? Visit the "ASL Training Center!" (Subscription Extension of ASLU)
* Also check out Dr. Bill's channel: www.youtube.com/billvicars
You can learn American Sign Language (ASL) online at American Sign Language University ™
ASL resources by Lifeprint.com © Dr. William Vicars